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Submitted on
May 22, 2012
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2.3 MB
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Northwest Passage by KristinaGehrmann Northwest Passage by KristinaGehrmann
Down sank the baleful crimson sun,
The northern light came out,
And glared upon the ice-bound ships,
And shook its spears about.

Sir John, the night is black and long,
The hissing wind is bleak,
The hard, green ice as strong as death:
I prithee, Captain, speak!

The night is neither bright nor short,
The singing breeze is cold,
The ice is not so strong as hope,
The heart of man is bold!

(from: "A Ballad of Sir John Franklin" by G.H. Boker)

This is either the HMS Erebus or the HMS Terror, a 19th century exploration vessel. Both these ships left England on the ill-fated Franklin Expedition in 1845.

Sir John Franklin hoped to navigate through the so-called Northwest Passage in the Arctic. But in the Victoria Strait, both ships became trapped in ice. The crew waited two and a half years for the ice to thaw but that did not happen. So in April 1848 they decided to abandon the ships and were not heard from again. No single man made it back home to England. It is assumed that they died from disease, food poisoning and starvation. From relics found by search expeditions later it was concluded that the last survivors eventually resorted to cannibalism.

Franklin's Lost Expedition - on wikipedia

It is pure Hollywood drama, and I'm astonished the story has not been made into a movie yet. I have, however, read a chilling (no pun intended) novel about it: The Terror, by Dan Simmons.

This was a new challenge for me - I wanted to paint a scene without any people in it. :)

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MoonyMina Featured By Owner Sep 11, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
this is simply awesome :) great art about a truly interesting period
KristinaGehrmann Featured By Owner Sep 11, 2014  Professional Digital Artist
Thank you :heart:
HeliosTaranis Featured By Owner Sep 10, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Sakraida82 Featured By Owner Mar 29, 2014
Very very true, why hasn't this become a movie? Though Hollywood would make a mess of things. 
Dinofuzz Featured By Owner Sep 6, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Beeindruckend! Wirklich sehr beeindruckend!
cemac Featured By Owner Jul 5, 2013
I have included this wonderful artwork in the new feature for July 2013 on the front of the :icondigitaldelights: journal. Please :+fav: the journal so that more members will see your art and thank you for being a member :heart:
Saint-Walker Featured By Owner Feb 6, 2013
Love the piece, the little bits and pieces scattered across the ice are very in tune with what historians think actually happened, the Expedition survivors lugged a lot of equipment that was incredibly heavy and completely useless and may have helped seal their fate by slowing them down and wearing them out and by the time they finally ditched it, it was too late to do any good and their fates were sealed
RD-DD1843 Featured By Owner Dec 15, 2012
They still have not found the wreckage of either ship, which may be off the coast of King William's Land in the Arctic portion of Canada.
Velvet--Glove Featured By Owner Nov 23, 2012
:iconfeatureplz: Hi! This work has been featured in my journal here: [link]
If you want me to remove your art please just let me know! Enjoy! :iconflowerheartplz:
leloops Featured By Owner Oct 27, 2012
mein gott, das eis sieht so realistisch aus :omfg: spitzenklasse. ausgezeichnet.
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